Hungarian Poppies

I've started poppies by seed for the first time - they are now in 3" peat pots. Several of them have outer leaves starting to yellow.
Our last frost date is somewhere around April 15-30, which is when I planned to put them in the garden. My questions are:
What is causing the yellowing of the leaves?
Is it too soon to put them in ground?
They've been in a greenhouse sized cold frame, although I just brought in all the plants as it's going into the 20's tonight.
Kate Nashville TN
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Your poppies should have been direct seeded into the ground. In your climate, that could have been done anytime in the winter. (Poppies are considered a winter annual in the deep south, and bloom in late winter/early spring, but your climate is not as warm as that) Poppies are one of the most cold hardy annuals - they sprout when conditions are to their liking and can put up with quite a bit of frost and cold weather. You can plant them out now, but should be forewarned that poppies are relatively intolerant of transplanting. If your peat pots can remain intact as they go into the ground, they should be alright, although in general poppies prefer sandy soil, not peaty soil. Normally hungarian poppies (a fancy name for opium poppies) would like to bloom in June or July in the cooler climates they prefer. They are native to places with lower humidity than Nashville, (such as the mediterranean and the mountainous areas of the Middle East) and it's possible that they will not do well once the worst of the hot and humid weather arrives. I hope for your sake that they will have finished blooming by the time that happens. Next year, plant the seeds outside in the open ground in late November or December, and the plants will show you the time they'd prefer to grow and bloom in your nashville.

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Thanks - I was getting that sneaking suspicion. Into the ground they go!
presley wrote:

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